By Alexander Onuorah
It was indeed the Lord’s goodness made manifest in the lives of the Priests, the religious men and women and the lay people of God in St. Mary’s Catholic Church, Amurri, Nkanu West Local Government Area of Enugu State, on the Pastoral Visit made by the Chief Shepherd of the Catholic Diocese of Enugu, His Lordship, Most Rev. Dr. Callistus V.C. Onaga, on Saturday, 29th October, 2016. The Bishop was there to dedicate the Parish Church to the glory of God.
Reflecting on the Readings of the day taken from 1Kings 8:22-23.27-30; Ephesians 2:19-22 and Matthew 16:13-19, the Bishop said during a homily he titled “there is no God like you”, that God Himself chooses one who builds a House for Him (O buonyeChukwuhoroga-aruyaulo).
Early at the Mass, the Bishop commended the people of St. Mary’s Amurri and friends for their various contributions towards the building of the befitting House of God. He further appreciated their efforts, that though many may not have erected modern houses for themselves in their families, but yet strived to put a wonderful House for their God. The Bishop continued to admit that it is fitting when a dwelling place of God is given the utmost attention it requires by His own people; because from there they receive the Sacraments of Baptism, Confirmation and Holy Matrimony, and other blessings. “If you enter God’s House with faith to pray, be satisfied that your prayers should be answered”, the Bishop assured.
Followed immediately after the sermon were the dedication of the Church and the administering of the Sacrament of Confirmation to over one hundred and thirty faithful by the Bishop.
The Parish Priest, Very Rev. Fr. Dr. Cletus Obasi CMF, in his words while giving a vote of thanks, praised the Almighty God for blessing the people of the community with the event of the dedication of St. Mary’s Church. He continued to thank the Bishop with his entourage and other members of the Diocesan Curia for their deep love for the people of Amurri. The Priest described their visit to the community as a big blessing and miracle. He at the same time appreciated the efforts of his co-pastors, Very Rev. Fr. ChrysantusNnaemekaOgbozo CMF and Rev. Fr. Matthew OkechukwuMmuo CMF, the entire Parishioners, friends and well-wishers who have worked selflessly in making the event a huge success.
Speaking further in an interview, after the Mass, the Parish Priest used the opportunity to congratulate the newly confirmed lay faithful and urged them to go into the world and let the light of God in their lives shine. He again applauded his Parishioners for their wonderful support and encouraged them to be more committed to the things of God. He prayed the same God to reward all abundantly for their good work.
HRH Igwe Fidelis NwachinekeNsiegbu (JP) Ezediohamma I of UmuigboAmurri kingdom who also spoke with newsmen, expressed joy that the first Church in Amurri, St. Mary’s Catholic Church has been dedicated to God. The traditional ruler thanked Bishop C.V.C. Onaga for having the people of Amurri at heart for the great occasion of the dedication of the House of God in their community. The Igwe also thanked the Parish Priest, Very Rev. Fr. Dr. Cletus Obasi CMF (Ochendo) and identified him as a vibrant worker in the Lord’s vineyard. He commended all who have helped in the building of the Church.
Also speaking was the Vice Chairman, Parish Council, Engr. Cyprian Okoh (Nwatachinawaraorji) who felt very happy, and said that the day’s event was a faith boosting one. He urged Amurri Catholic Community, both home and abroad to always consider the things of God their top priority, and God will continue to bless them.
The event attracted many respected personalities from different parts of the state and beyond. To make the occasion more colourful were group of entertainers who performed to trill the guests.